singing medicine

a beautiful song

rides in that voice

words  trickle into depths

ecstatic ripples hypnotize

from your entrancing vocals

because you are like a constellation

of brightness in a dark soul

your beautiful song is balm

on scalded hearts like mine

I call you singing medicine.



beyond Afro-humanity

strangled brothers

dangling like bundled firewood

on creaky Libyan windows

awaiting to be plucked

away like ticks into slavery

as we enjoy the entertainment

on cables from across Atlantic this slavery



freedom Sunday

The idea of freedom is as ancient as creation. We are born in chains live in chains and die in chains so said a philosopher. So what exactly is freedom? The struggles that we encounter from cradle alert our survival instincts from the onset. We realize that we are born in a world that impinges on everything dear to us. A world riddled with everything that works against expectations. Freedom therefore for me is having the realization that everything in life is a struggle. The realization that actually there is no infinite freedom. To know that the search for this is a futile plunge. Just like we know that there is no elixir of immortality so must we accept this truth. Let freedom Sunday tack away in memory.

Season of the hornbills


This is the year when not even the living room is safe.

Outside; footsteps clunk on crisp twigs that crunch over hushed voices almost stifled by a mixture of fear and anxiety. One living room window rattles. A morbid rock smashes through it collapsing glass panes into obsolete smithereens. This is the true heart of darkness where souls of an innocent family are strangled into the imminent grip of cruel uncertainty. A peaceful night collapses.

“Ng’aaaaaa aaa! Ng’aaaaaa aaa!”

The riotous sound of hornbills during the day and in such a night their conspicuous silence. This is the time of the year when these bold white and black birds, the seasonal birds around Mahii village, swoop in like vultures on the village fruit trees lashing and tearing into rotting fruits with their massive beaks abandoning behind them a lousy mess when they move on into another village thirsty to stir another lousy mess. Their presence is hard to ignore, they come in the season of fruits every year to find battalions of scarecrows and scores of children with catapults ready to wedge against them, a titanic war for their livelihoods.

It is dark in the living room. This is the year of the general election.



A voice behind a flashlight breaks into my dissolving composure. It is Julius Abraham Okwachi’s voice. Old Abraham as everyone fondly calls him flashes the torch into my face. I blink turning my face away from the light into her swollen eyes. She has been sleeping we all have been sleeping. He sharply swipes it around the living room, around our feet, over the television, beneath the sofas before he turns it to our feet again.

“They have come.”

He switches off the torch. Another stone lands into a window pane.

“Can you hear that?” she whispers.

“Those are stones from catapults.”

“Buzzing catapults are a declaration of war!” old Abraham declares.

“This is a declaration of war? Not again!”

She is distraught.

“Brother shall rise against brother my son, prophesy is being fulfilled. There is a time for everything; you will lead your mother after me.”

More resolutely does his good eye command but it’s invisible in the dark. Its inscrutable mettle demystifies any doubt who is the man of the hour. Old Abraham is unruffled. He stands tall-the Okwachi’s are from the tall stock. The man has devoutly worked; to his reputation there is a church, a family and scores of young scholars. He is a household name in Mahii.

When you hear people sing celebratory songs, in our village. It is credit to old Abraham. His school is the best Academy in the entire farming valley. Mahii is a pristine settlement. Close to it is the famous rift valley.

“We love the stew, we love the teachers we love the word of God.”

That is what you will always hear the children say for the love of their school motto. Food for the body, Education for the mind and to God be the glory.

The school has been my mother’s heart for as long as I can remember her unprejudiced love for children.

“We should improve the school menu.”

“That’s an idea but our budget needs a cut not a raise Anastasia.”

“Just add a fruit my wise man avocados would do great they are cheap and in plenty this season.”

Recently she had chimed obstinately trying to get old Abraham buy her new idea for the school children welfare.

“Yeah the season of avocados and those…”

“..ugly birds.”

“The hornbills.”


“This is their migrating season.”

“What a coincidence that this is the election year.”


“Let’s pray for peace…”


“… and hope that only the hornbills will be migrating.”

“Aha!But don’t run away from avocados…”

Old Abraham contented to lose the argument and now we have bags of avocados in the school store. Some American evangelists who bankroll a charity for orphans in the academy were delighted when he wrote them an e-mail about the new developments within the week-courtesy of his wife Anastasia- so much so that they wrote back. We were to expect them as the mail put it in a month’s time.

But we are ‘immigrants’.Tala which is our ancestral enclave is miles away from Mahii.

“This is the land of your fathers.”

Years way back old Abraham took me on a pilgrimage to Tala. I had to face the knife in the land of my progenitors as custom prescribed or I would risk being considered a ‘woman’. The significance being that when my blood trickled from my foreskin to the ancestors long buried in the land there would be a binding covenant between me and my heritage. It was quite a poignant time for me. I remember a vista of interspersed rocky crags and plains of furrowed strips of land. Then there were smaller pieces like handkerchiefs strewn with Mexican sun flower plants whose illuminating yellow flowers in the sun chocked any view of the grass beneath. This impression was inexplicably empowering.

The end of the pilgrimage came at the time I healed from the cut. So old Abraham had left his people and made for the unknown country Mahii, I remember gloating over that realization and immediately forming a new respect for the man. Armed with great faith in conservative Christianity, the gift of the garb, a legendary obstinacy in the belief of his talents and some handsome saving from a former herbal medicine trade he established that small empire in Mahii-a school, a farm and a family. Old Abraham was a total man old Abraham to this hour is a man.

It is midnight.

Esther my younger and only sibling is away in Nairobi visiting my father’s only sister our aunt Bella. I am fond of Esther and I am missing her right now. How could this happen just now?

—Happy birthday may you live to blow a thousand candles—

That was her message on my last birthday. And what a pleasure it had been.

My face relaxes into a quick smile fast cut short in its prime by a dozen window panes scattering.

“We can’t just be killed!” I can feel myself sliding into a panic.

“We must leave now!”

“But papa we are unarmed.”

“The more reason we need to move fast Apopo.”

“Without arms at least let me carry a machete, a stick anything…”

“We are not at war.”

I cannot believe him.

“We will touch no hair; we will raise no finger nor spill blood.”


“We are God fearing people. This is the land God gave us. He surely shall not forsake us. We will try and negotiate with our brothers they surely cannot harm us. I have done so much for this people surely they will remember my good deeds. But if we must die lets die in faith and on the side of peace. My house shall not have blood on its hands.”

Does he want our blood washing the carpets then? Old Abraham is surely out of his wits. This is the opium of faith. Conscience makes the coward of us at times when it’s least rewarding.

“An eye for an eye Apopo blacks out the sun and the moon.”

Only the foolish get killed. Are we as foolish as the hornbills that eat rotting avocados?

“Apopo we can run but we cannot hide from death.”

It’s good I have a kitchen knife tucked somewhere on my body anyway.

He is the patriarch, the general of this besieged army. We the loyal lieutenants must stride along to the gallows if that be as it may. I am not startled that mother’s lips are sealed like the lock of the school store. There is a strict hierarchy in this army. The general has exclusive privileges to have the last word. I have no entitlement to speak whatsoever in such circumstances. I am too old to be living with them anyway. At thirty I should be in my own house with my own wife and woes. But life is hard as you all know.

“Why don’t you join the army instead of sitting behind your computer all the time? Computers don’t give jobs.” he one time suggests I recall.

“I am thinking about it.” I lie.

“Don’t think my son act.”

At that point I should have acted. But I could not picture myself in the uniform. I am an intellectual, an Engineering graduate aspiring to teach in the school of Engineering and Technology, I am no scowling saluting pumpkin to be indoctrinated into a patriotic fallacy.

After all I am now a father. Elizabeth my longtime love just wrote me an email demanding I exercise the first bragging rights of a father and give my daughter a name. I love girls. I am already in love with my daughter. I gave her the most beautiful name.

Jasmine Christine Okwachi

A new flower into the Okwachi garden I suppose. Lately old Abraham’s old age has been more profound. His unshaven long beard resembles the stark Moses images in my long lived picture bible story book. His more often unkempt hair like that of a mad scientist has been almost neglected of care. I wish he learnt that he is a grandfather. What would he do about his current look?


Jasmine my daughter allow me to apologize for starting your life on earth as an absentee father. Of course you are innocent, you have not heard BBC radio announce that reports reaching them indicate that sporadic violence has erupted in our country. That said, welcome to the world of sorrows and troubles. I promise to be a great father though, to get a footing like fathers must and devote my ambitions to make you a princess, to live with you in a great house and take you to a great school. In short I want a great life for you but right now I even don’t know if I will live.


The clock chimes from somewhere. Who cares what time it is our only hope is hopelessness. There are voices shrieking in all manner of cadences around us like horny hornbills chasing each other to mate.

“The big nation plucks the stinking weeds!”

“Our soil groans under some foreign fat!”

“We the owners say out with their fat asses!”

“They are immigrants!”

“They are nonsense!”

“They are hornbills!”

“They are foreigners!”

This is a litany of derogatoriess that are shoved into our faces. It is an inscrutable rabble.

“One is called xenophobia but this is tribophobia.”

To myself I whisper and store in my heart as I pull my mother over. A long I drag a ting gunny bag stuffed with quick essentials haphazardly put together by the adorable mama.

“You have the bible in there?”

“Yes mama.”

Hissing Molotov cocktails receive us metres away from the back door. An arrow, two and almost an entire quiver fly into the house. I clamp my fingers like an eagle’s hasty sharp claws on one that chances into my grasp breaking it into two after which I keep the tail for my own fancy. A number of men in berets charge in and make a wall around us.

A man falls down.

We are in the center of clomouring boots, clattering machetes, sticks, metal bars supporting all crudeness a mind can dare imagine of a savage confrontation. The rousing of the rabble keeps escalating like a hungry lion’s roar devouring any chances of negotiation whoever thought of such a crazy idea.

“Hornbills must go!”

“Hornbills must go!”



“Cut their necks here is a machete!”



“Exorcise our land!”

“Away with the evil spirits”

“Smoke them rats out.”


A roar picked here, a rasp picked there while hisses dole the thick air. It is endless. In the weight of hisses our blood is called for. From the discordant choir no choirmaster could make out an intelligible rhythm.

Old Abraham’s concrete and mortar perimeter wall is a heap of rubble.

“Papa the wall is down.”

I look around.

“The wall is gone?”

Where is he? Where is old Abraham? I see only strangers.

“The wall is fallen! The wall! The wall is fallen.” A man in a beret shouts. A military order follows.

“Fire into the scoundrels bellies boys just fire life in danger!”

“Boys fire to kill or to make way!”

Pulsating chains of gunshots arrest the air. In that pathetic incendiary fog my concentration is disfigured.

“God do not forsake us!” mama gasps gnashing her teeth.

“Apopo get my headscarf!”

I grab it for her. It has loosened in the scuffle and fallen to the ground.

“Apopo oh Apopo oh Apopo!” she weeps.

I am soaked in blood and feel sickeningly nauseated. It must be my ugly sight that is driving her into further insanity. What insanity is this?


The dénouement approaches.

In the throes of a tragedy comes insanity.

The sight of a weeping mother before a son.

And the son speechless.


The teacher of vanities isn’t there a time for everything?

There is nothing new you on the other side of this page there is nothing new but the intensity of the hate.  I am aware of this even as I cough out into thick dust which stings my eyes. I know it is vanity trying to figure out big words like Nationhood Brotherhood and Manhood.

Lemons are not my favourite fruits but I chew on one that kills the nausea.

There is a rough road that swirls past my roving eye. It feels like a cavalry front man in epic battles after a lucky hike from a bullet storm trying to have a cold drink beneath the shade of a tree. The KDF Bedford M-Series is a consoling beast that has swallowed our miseries. We are a light baggage for the droning military truck.

“Oh! What madness unwatched! Madness that is as pure as triple distilled vodka working in the head. The vote has been counted, rigged and the winner taken it all lets accept and move on.”

I ponder over a man’s words. It is a man who died trying to catch our lorry which was already full with ‘immigrants’. The truck full of us exotic hornbills, invaders who have perched for a long time on native trees, feeding on the fruit of the land.

“Accept and move on.”

Didn’t he say so? Yes.

In this treacherous sea of misery there is a soldier. His face is distorted with patriotic scars perhaps fighting Alshabaab extremists in the snake infested bush on the Kenya Somalia border. A 450mm barrel G-3 rifle is slung over his shoulder below a square perfect jaw. He is tall like three of the G-3s vertically on top of each other with an easy air around him. I can discern beyond his face there lays an experience that would thrill action movie script writers. He is a jolly like fellow; with the sole conviction of defending his country from invasion.

As he leans forward under my watchful eye I notice his intimate grip on the gun. Up on the arm there is a double stripe of rank which evidently has seen its better days.

“It has always been like this.” he says.

I look around but I realize he is talking to me.What a way to begin an acquaintance? The Kenyan way of course; where like old friends strangers become familiar acquaintances by striking a conversation without formalities.

“1988, 92’, 97’ and the game continues.” he speaks in a deep voice.

“It’s not a game.”

“It’s a game I tell you.”

“It’s a bloodbath.”

He stumps out a cigarette under his boot.

“You must be young.”

“I am thirty.”

“Thirty is young.”

Is it really? I wonder.

“I still think it’s not a game soldier.”

He unexpectedly explodes in laughter through an outlandish crackle of a smoker’s deep voice.

“You still have milk teeth in Kenyan politics I see.”

“Egalitre, liberte , fraternite,”

What I’m I even saying?


“The people need to rise up.”

“What are you saying?”

“Equality liberty and fraternity is what we need.”

“What nonsense is that?”

“Nonsense, the kind of which will stop the cycle of death our five years have become. The kind of nonsense that happened years back in France and people were set free from tyranny. The kind of tyranny we have here in the corridors of power.”

“Now I see.” he chuckles

“You must be university material that is the only place you can collect such rubbish.”

“Yes I am a graduate.”

As I own up I cannot escape to notice his dismissive tone of my ilk. However it is common out here and I’m not offended least of all.

“I am sorry you are too idealistic. You are like a wind bag. And that is the problem with you people. The world out here is a world of action not theories. You cannot get a woman by only singing love songs to her. She needs to see some action man.”

We both chuckle.

“Soldier then I think my life has been a fraud.”

“Spill the beans.”

“The big dreams of becoming a great man could just be an illusion. For me to be a great man in this country I have to become a politician.”

“You are now plucking your milk teeth man. All those theories you cram at the University will take you nowhere. Pluck some more teeth. Open your eyes crack your skull.”

This is it! I say to hell with dreams to make it big. The man speaks the truth no doubt. The world out here is real.

“Do you have a wife?”

“No but my girlfriend just gave birth to a baby girl.”

“My congratulations are in order.”

He stretches a rough hand and grabs mine in a firm grip.

“Is it a boy or girl?”

“It is a girl.”

“Be a good father.”

He releases my hand.

“I will.”

What a promise. The road is bumpy, full of potholes. The Bedford bumps into a small pothole, and then lurches into a bigger one like a hornbill lurching onto a branch of an avocado tree. We are swayed from our positions and the soldier is swallowed into a body of men. It’s a bumpy ride and bumpy rides can be rough.

A corpse now travels with us. An arrow sticks out of its chest and another in the left shoulder. Its entire torso is bloodied. A signal is given and the truck stops. If we have to go all the way and have peace with the corpse which will stink worse than rotten avocadoes we need to find a burial ground as fast as we can.

The soldier and all his available comrades are quite handy. With concerted effort we wrap old Abraham’s body into a collection of leso’s provided by the women among them Anastasia’s which is emblazoned with the patriotic mantra Kenyans love peace. Poor mother steel your nerves and accept your widowhood and move on.

‘Woe to the hand that shed this costly blood’

In some savage thicket between the intermittence of the hooting of hornbills and ominous silence old Abraham is laid to rest.






poetic wheels rolling


poignant September

brains out of skulls

bones out of flesh

before guns and grenades

on the counters of a shopping mall


Bullets declothing priests

bullets mid-wifing  wombs

death and its angel disenchanting

roam in a capital under siege

In the name of decolonizing the kafirs.











When a palm tree resumes erection,

with its veins sapped with new blood

the mercenary wind beyond sands of beaches gone

weeping weighs of suicide


forbording earth gorged by pick axes

desolation is tonight sorrow’s passport

timelessness deports dreams.


















clasped in their boughs

caressing her stem her hosts

as in ecstasy she climbs roped

with her poisonous seduction

to sell herself to high culture.




lone in the sub-Saharan sun

erect in its yellow mellow

the new morning African glow

entombed in his progenital trajectory

its flower sings in anew wind

lisping unfettered freedom.








a plate of mahshi


‘…there lives out of a mahshi plate, frothing boils of the skin after a gaseous recipe, war pepper that blows hot into sails, bales of exodus crammed into exile boats like barrels of Russian contraband Pushkin vodka onto ancient Greek philosophical beaches thirsty for a drink in their reserves-On the way to Damascus Moscow prowls like a Siberian tiger, Washington a spying eagle in the mountains as death strides into your plate-Can silence be heard?…Yours ;

Valediction from the chef.



















Clasped around mortality

weeping is the pendulum

swinging within annihilation



in a modern mall,

great hurrahs of conquests,

are trampling on scattered shrieks


there are flag shreds

that look like illusions of tattered skeletons:

there is weeping for a son


there is beheading by guns

whose midwives are grenades

terror sublimes


there is laughter over splintered bones

from Jurassic lords of desert war

there is weeping for a mother


you are either a kafir

either an infidel

OR an Unidentified Faithless Object


the birth of weeping

the growth of death

the tyranny of terror.





















a sundown,

bachelors bait, spinsters wait

billboards wink, giant buses fart


chaos in howling voices roam into chaos

from vagabond husbands down River Road

to multi-married single but ready to mingle SPONSORS rounding scotch whiskey tots


a metamorphosis of uhuru

from unequal daylight of working quitetude

to an unequal reaping nighthood














In darkest of communions,

dressed, in word

but, naked in deed


wizards with flywhisks

recycled comedians on pulpits

chanting poisonous parables


robbed in rhetoric rubric

magical black briefcases like little caskets

full of cold stashes like unholy charades


Story! Story!

for knives for bards of blood for ‘glory’

this is the world’s darkest recycled gory.











the poignant poet for her sorrow

casting from the shadows-of  precaution-

beneath trees sparse like halleluiahs  from the Atheist,

whose roots are deep copulation taps in spiritual conjugation with earth-A dead new world,


SHE is 54, was pristine at 16, once upon a priestess

What a 54 perforated demon that now roars beyond banks like a thousand blasting nuclear warheads


deep in his eyes- tears

his vacuous soul

her bowels like the barrel of a rustic Mau Mau gun

loaded dense with stifling mud

dead roots and roughness so decadent

SHE blusters down,


wrenched out from the earth’s nudity

a ruin from Machiavellian hemlock

Why is there such impunity in desolation?




Poignancy  flattered-in the immortal recreation

Of a beauty be gone- a dirge, a bereft God’s gift

prostate in her impotent soul, it’s a mortal memory

her birth and her death,


a tragic dénouement,

naked land, towards the uncertain sea SHE groans

for her poignant poet,it is exile into utopia

his hope, eroded  and deflowered like virginity in a city brothel

Yes, for now, a drink in her desolate cup.
















Her voice is husky-millennial-

because she wants a man

in a woman’s body, or is it the whisky?

the height of the new stiletto or

The short dress,

a Dunhill between her fingers

between his eyes, between his mind, between her thighs…

at the Hilton-in the mind of an Alfa male-

sex wars is the- millennial- dessert

a pudding  of testosterone vs. oestrogen.















From forgotten gravetones

From slumbered dead pens ink

Hieroglyphical tapestry

Fertilizes barren literary ova

From ashes of East African importence.





The new teacher





“Every clock has hands that move forward”


To my Late father,

Abukutsa James Mukolla








Dramatis personae






The principal

Fire brigade


The school chaplain

























Scene One

(The setting is that of a typical school hall. It is an all girls’ school ‘The meanscore Academy” It is on a Saturday evening during the Holiday Tuition. Some girls are wearing a fancy hairstyle ‘the mahawk which is illegal. They are all but excited and enjoying the entertainment which for this evening involves music and dancing. The music that is playing is quite noisy and entertaining to them. However, this kind of music is also illegal in the school but kindly supplied by the entertainment Master Mr. Mapambo. The entertainment appears to be going on well until there is a sudden interruption by Mr. Luis Makaburi. Bokasa who is the discipline master, the D.O.S, the QUASO, time master, canteen Operations Officer and above all a C.R.E teacher, quite conservative,. He is garbed in a tight black coat, a tie probably red, a white shirt, a brown trouser holding a huge bunch of keys and wearing a no nonsense face. He authoritatively strides his step and does it moderately in a seemingly measured way, he also has a crocodile kind of smile and a hyena kind of laughter. He is always carrying a bell. He enters in his usual style. The girls hardly notice him; they are consumed in the entertainment. He vigorously rings the bell. The girls ignore him. He gets incensed and goes over to the music system located somewhere with a “D’J” and turns it off before unleashing his best at the girls.) The bell shall be improvised from the soundtrack.


Bokasa:           You, You and You (violently pointing at them. Every other girl is terrified.

                        This is horrible. You are looking like demons in the dances of witches.                                           You are worse than Medusa. What is this hell that has descended onto our school?                              Or are you bewitched?

All four:          No Sir—-

Bokasa:           (interrupts) Hey. That is not a question. You are not supposed to answer it. You,                            You, You and You. What have you done to your head.

All four:          It’s a hairstyle!

Bokasa:           (Sniggering) Hairstyle indeed! (smiles and laughs his disgusting way). Since           when did the school allow hairstyles? Hairstyles my foot. Hairstyles without a lifestyle                           are the devils trap. Do you understand?

All:                  (Innocently) No!

Bokasa:           Of course. You, You and You. Can the world of fools bestow so high expectations on you as to expect you to understand simple concepts. (violently nods in disapproval) No! Aha! Of course not.  You, what position were you last term?

Girl 1:              200 out of 201 (Two hundred out of two hundred and one)

Bokasa:           You see.

                        You what did you get in C.A.T one Mathematics

Girl 2:              (03 out of 50)

                        (Three out of fifty.)

Bokasa:           Oh! This time you were lucky to escape zero. And you when was the last time you got a badge .

Girl 3:              (Nods in the negative)

Bokasa:           Open your lips. Don’t shake that little head. I have seen better

Girl 3:              I have never—-

Bokasa:           Of course. You have never and probably will never. Have you paid for Holiday Tuition? You?

Girl 4:              No

Bokasa:           And you

Girl 1:              No

Bokasa:           And you

Girl 2:              No

Bokasa:           You can see. Then you say teachers are bad. Teachers are greedy. Ban holiday tuition. Bla!bla!bla!. As engineers, doctors, lawyers and teachers are paying for holiday tuition failures are twisting like wizards in a village funeral dance.

Girl 4:              (Extremel; hurt) the minister for Education—–
Bokasa:           (Swiftly moves and slaps her)

Don’t talk when I’m talking. What do you know? You were born yesterday. (Mimics) The             minister for Nyenyeye — Rubbish! Olympia.

                        (A girl shoots out from the rest. She was the “DJ” She performs a curtsy)

                        What time is it?

                        (she fumbles)

                        What time is it?
Olympia:         I think…

Bokasa:           Don’t think. It is past time to think. This is half past ten prime meridian time, Saturday night, Your entertainment has overstretched. What is the rule young lady?

Olympia:         Entertainment begins at half past nine and ends at ten P.m.

Bokasa:           Ant what time is it.

Olmpia:           Ten thirty sir.

Bokasa:           (moves and slaps her)

                        You are the most delinquent inefficient buffoon. And you think you are a leader

Olympia:         Yes sir

Bokasa:           Shut up?

We have noticed that you are a dangerous element in the school. You are a populist and    populists are not leaders. We are keenly watching your movement. This is a school with        its reputation and standard. Your days are numbered.

Olympia:         Sir

Bokasa:           Silence!

                        You, you, you and you. Give me your names.

Girl 1:              Eunice

Girl 2:              Shanice

Girl 3:              Patience

Girl 4:              Valence

Bokasa:           Valence, Patience Shanice and Eunice

All four:          Yes Sir!

Bokasa:           You are booked for disciplinary action. Actions that will make you dance to a different kind of music. You are going to face the music. This is not a disco. This is a school with a reputation and standards. This is ”The meanscore academy”

Bokasa:           (Ringing the bell)

                        Get out of here. Entertainment is over

All:                  Yes Sir!

                        (They leave in fear)

Bokasa:           (To himself)

                        What is education coming to? The teacher has become the student. You turn this way and meet miniskirts in the name of child rights. You turn the other way and you meet “No    corporal punishment’ child heads. Now children are electing children. Democracy of child’s rights. And above all, no salary increment so, what is the world coming to? In our       days, a teacher was a teacher and a student was a student, full stop. So, these days a teacher has to survive. A teacher has to lay low. A teacher has to listen to the child. Nonsense, rubbish, rabbit. I’m a teacher and a student shall be a student.Rule number one The teacher is always right if in doubt refer to rule number one.

(enter Mapambo in a full suit followed by Olympia)

Olympia:         Sir!

Mapambo:       Olympia I’m not impressed.

Olympia:         It is an exaggeration

Mapambo:       Are you trying to say that the teacher is a liar.

Olympia:         Not exactly but very close, I know—

Mapambo:       The teacher must be telling the truth.

Olympia:         The teacher has never been for me. He has always been against me. He always says bad things about me.

Mapambo:       What are you insinuating? Are you implying that you have made judgments about a very senior teacher? A very experienced teacher who has taught in this school for over fifteen years. A teacher with a reputation and standards. Are you judging a teachers judgment?

Olympia:         Absolutely not. I simply want to give my side of the story. I want to lay bare the facts.Sometimes the teacher is not always right—

Mapambo:       Go ahead. And you better not be lying or your laying bare the facts will be                                    counterproductive lay bare your lies.

Olympia:         It was on Saturday entertainment time as usual—


Mapambo:       Oh  you remind me .Remember.And I remember vividly and it is on record that I solicited for the entertainment for you people when everyone was against it during this Holiday tuition. You better not spoil things for yourselves.And my argument has always been.Entertainment is key in all our learning institutions .We cannot afford to throw it away.Or else our school shall be putting itself int the line of fire.

Olympia:         And I must say .The students really appreciate, sir. As I was saying. On Saturday   we had our entertainment as usual—


Mapambo:       And some things were on—-

Olympia:         —Things that are normal for entertainment among girls our age. We had music and people were dancing. Everyone was excited.


(As she remembers the music plays and dancers get on stage. A replica of the dance during Saturday entertainment)


Perhaps we stretched into time.

Mapambo :Did you or did you not

Olympia:We did.And that’s the only thing that went wrong.I have never lied to you sir and I m not about to begin now!

Mapambo:       Apart from time Venus. You forgot alot other things that were brought to my atention. You forgot about character and discipline. Entertainment or no entertainment I entrust you to keep the girls in check. The girls in the school programmes have restricted times,restricted rules and a restricted schedule to follow.

Olympia:         Exactly what I did. The girls were disciplined and nothing extraordinary happed to question their character. I played the music you provided. It was just music. The girls really had a wonderful entertainment. I kept them in check.

Mapambo:       So, when Eunice, Venice, Shanice and Patience were fondling and cuddling each other. Dancing very provocatively with interlocked arms, in a strange hairstyle and in semi-darkness twisting and wrigling. Were you not there cheering them on?

                        (Olympia is evidently shocked)

Olympia:         That is very untrue. Believe you me nothing like that happened. What I have reported is what happened.I f that is the report from Mr.Bokasa its is just a fabrication. The only truth is that some girls had made temporary maw hawks.

Mapambo:       That is illegal

Olympia:         Its (hesitates) the only way they can enjoy themselves better. Sir, it’s the only way girls in this school can have a different feel of life. You don’t know sir, girls feel this school is a prison. They have no time to be creative.

Mapambo:       Are you out of your mind?

Olympia:         If only you were in our generation. Maybe you would understand. We  need somebody  to understand us.


Mapambo:       This is not the time for lamentations. All in all whether it is an exaggeration or not I am not impressed. The report is very preposterous. It is so damaging to the image of the    entertainment department.

                        The report carries weighty allegations. And you are in the middle of everything. From now on until futher notice entertainment has been banned.


Olympia:Oh no!


Mapambo:       That is an order from the administration.

Olympia:         The girls are not going to like it.

Mapambo:       That is the point. This is supposed to be a punishment. As a lesson for the mischief you people engaged in on Saturday.

Olympia:         It is unfair to punish all the students. It is just a few who are perceived to have                              misbehaved. It is against the bill of rights chapter 4 of the constitution!


Mapambo:       There is nothing that can be done.As for the bill of rights you better have a more detailed look.Your rights do not overide other peoples rights.


Olympia:         (Pleading) I know you are human and more understanding sir. Please sir, Please please     (By now Bokasa has come in)

                        Stress and depression is going to spread like a wild bush fire.

I swear I know Mr. Bokasa is behind all this. He is so unfair. He hated me. I know he never wanted me as a leader. I was a very fine CRE student but I dropped it because of him.And after that. He always finds faults in me. He is always victimising me since I dropped his subject. But I know his hatred is deeper. I have the impression that there is more than meets the eye.

Bokasa:           (with the confidence of a detective who has just nabbed a criminal)


                        (Olympia is thoroughly startled)

                        What is this that is more than meets the eye

Olympia:         (confused) I—

Mapambo:       The girl has simply been

Bokasa:Trying to trap you—

Mapambo:No.She has simply been trying

Bokasa:Trying to ensnare you—

Mapambo:No.She has simply been trying to

 explaining to me a few things that happened on Saturday.


Bokasa:           (To Olympia) You are the worst hypocrite since Judas Iscariot. I am sure as usual you have been feeding your teacher with lies.

                        (to mapambo)

Mr. Mapambo. This is a dangerous element in the school.Dont be cheated. You can see how she talks about her teachers. You don’t know what she will say about you. This is a lying gossiping machine. A chatterbox. The day she leaves this school I am sure it will rain cats and dogs. She is a cancer.She is a destructive influence in the students body that needs to be plucked out and exterminated.

(To Olympia)
You, isn’t it you who brought Mr. Katiba problems until he had to transfer.

Olympia:         (unable to control herself anymore)

                        It is not true—-

Bokasa:           Be quite. I have reports that you are a small scheming prostitute in the school.Isnt it you who was caught with letters of love from Makanga boys.

Olympia:         (Breaks down in sobs)It is not true.The Lord is my witness

                        The lord is my shepherd. I shall not want

                        He maketh me to lie in green pastures

                        He leadeth me beside the still waters

                        He me in the paths of righteousness—

Bokasa:           Hypocrite! Stop shedding crocodile tears you blasphemous little devil.

Mapambo:       Mr. Bokasa Makaburi those are strong words to use on an innocent young girl.

Bokasa:           (To the audience) You see, she has already confused another young male teacher.

                        (Back to Mr. Mapambo)

My friend. Oh, these tears should not fool you. This girl is the worst students have taught             in my long career of fifteen years. If you are not careful you will find yourself going for a transfer very soon.

Mapambo:       (To Olympia)

                        We must look into the entertainment issue more keenly and soberly.

                        Go and make further investigation. Maybe things may have happened behind your back. Come up with a report and any new progressive suggestions.

Olympia:         Yes sir. Thank you so much sir.

Bokasa:           I hope she knows that there’s no more entertainment

Olympia:         (answers him)

                        I know sir

Bokasa:           I was not talking to you!And why are you still here.You don’t even have respect to leave when udults are planning to talk

(she exits)
Mr. Mapambo you must come clean. There is a disturbing allegation about you and this girl

Mapambo:       which girl?

Bokasa :The one who has just been dismissed.

(Mapambo laughs)

            This is a serious matter

Mapambo:       If I remember history very well it was the Monica Lewinsky scandal that almost took down a president. But Mr. Mapambo facing allegations!

                        (laughs again)

I have no ambitions for any office in the school. So whoever wants to blackmail me will be scattering seeds on the rock. I’m not the sort of guy who is a cat among pigeons.

Bokasa:           Don’t talk so much English. As for History it is the study of man’s past events in a chronological order. In the present it is a different chronological matter altogether. You see my friend you must tread carefully. You are treading on very dangerous grounds.As dengerous as your enthusiasm.

Mapambo:       If my pay slip had a loan I’m about to default that would be dangerous. What you are insinuating is like an episode in Tahidi High.

Bokasa:           Hey! Don’t make light to this matter. It could cost your job. Don’t think I’m judging you. You are my friend. Young in the profession. Sometimes you are bound to get confused. It is normal especially for young fellows like you. I was once there. You only need to be very careful.

Mapambo:       When you are in the wrong place at the wrong time then you become a victim of circumstances. If I’m not wrong. But if you are in the right place at the right time you are master of your circumstances.

Bokasa:           I don’t understand you.

Mapambo:       Of course I don’t expect you to understand. But think about it.

Mapambo:       Danger that has been choreographed.

Bokasa:           Real danger! Real danger my friend!

(In an intentional move to scare Mapambo he goes into a crushing analogy)
I can see.

Mapambo:       See what?

Bokasa:           A big ocean

Mapambo:       What?

Bokasa:           It is dark. There is a whirlwind on the ocean—

Mapambo:       A whirlwind?

Bokasa:           The sun rises. It sets. It rises. It sets. It is dark. You are in the eye of the storm, the whirlwind of Vampires. Oh! What horrible creatures

(enter the creatures) Around you going for your neck. Competing for your blood. The water is howling like the vampires. Your blood is hot cake. There is no moon. You are striving for even a straw off grass. The vampires are fast. They launch. Deeper, Deeper, Deeper, you sink, screaming. You are drowning.


What a horrible disaster. But misery loves company. The shark. Its smelling blood, swimming fast. A huge shark. The vampires are gone. Its time for the shark. The sea is red.

(the above episode should be dramatized with sound track and other effects.)

Bokasa:           (singing a dirge)

Tsitsanga Ingo

Mwiatal lio vumenyo

Mwitala lia vuyanzi

Mwitala lia Nyasae

Mapambo:       (Recovering)


Bokasa:           (Enjoying himself)

That is enough hindsight and insight

Mapambo:       Vampires and sharks are my worst nightmares.

Bokasa:           And sharks and vampires have ended the career of many young teachers.

Mapambo:       There are no sharks and vampires in this society.

Bokasa:           It is amazing that you teach literature. You see, you are a man of the people remember Chief Nanga and behind you there is an Enemy of the people oh Peter stockmann (Mapambo should symbolically be behind him)beside you. The lion and the jewel Lakunle, around you crime and punishment,Raskolinkolf or is it the government inspector Anton antonovich.Is it a novel or a play

Mapambo:None of those tales

Bokasa:           Then prepare for hard times or it will be much ado about nothing.

Mapambo:       Your intelligence on lerature has been quite irrelecvant. You must try it on baboons. As for me and my intelligence I will preserve my dignity.

Bokasa:           I have washed my hands.

(Taking the bell and ringing it)Teacher of the year.I have oficially washed my hands

Mapambo:(shouting behind the backdrops as he exits)The administrators eyes.Who doesn’t know you?The spy

Bokasa:A teacher is always right.Rule number one

 (They exit)


(The principal enters grabbing Olympia by the collar. She is followed by the other girls Eunice Valence Shanice and Patience. Delilah also comes in.)

Antonniette:    Go down on your knees

(Olympia ignores and immediately Delilah jumps at her and slaps her several times)

Delilah:            (to the deputy Principal)

Madam this girl is very rude. She keeps bad company and she is the queen of immoral standards

(enter Bokasa)

Bokasa:           You, you and You it is you again. Eunice, Shannice, Valence and Patience.

All:                  Yes sir!

Bokasa:           (sneezes)

No wonder. What else can you do other than shooting trouble. You must have perfected the art of shooting and now you have become troubleshooters. Eunice, Shannice, Valence and Patience. The four musketeers.

Antonniette:    (with hand behind her back)
why are you little devils practicing immoral behaviors.

All:                  We are innocent.

Bokasa:           You are guilty until proven innocent.

(Bokasa gets their heads and knocks them)

You are guilty until proven innocent.

You are culprits and culprits are never innocent.

Culprit number one. Olympia Venus. The stinking rotten potato in the sack.

Madam, this one had the most rotten manners. Before you tell me I know she is the leader of immorality.

(Delilah quickly concurs)

Delilah:            Yes sir. This girl has spoilt the others. Olympia comes to school with illegal

items. All the time she is found over sleeping. When she goes out on trips she is always found sandwiched between boys. The last time she went out for drama she was seen behind the school bus laughing in a ring of boys

Bokasa:           She is bewitched

antonniette:     Delilah explain to mwalimu what she has been doing to pollute our school.

Bokasa:           (sneezes)

Before that madam

(looks at the culprits)


Olympia:         Yes sir!

Bokasa:           All of you

All:                  yes sir! 

Bokasa:           (gestures for them to rise)

                        Three frog jumps, three press ups immediately!

                        (they obey)

                        Now up. Three frog jumps. Now up!

                        (goes to them and gestures on their heads)

                        Madam can we get a pair of scissors?

                        (Patience knowing what to expect screams)

Patience:          Please sir. I beg you…

                        (goes on her knees before him pleading)

                        I beg you, don’t cut my hair…


Antonniette:    Shut up!


Bokasa:           Weep not child, all this is for your own good future. Delilah


Delilah:            Yes sir!


(he gestures to her to go and get a pair of scissors.Delilah exits and appears with a pair of scissors which can be dramatized ofr a prop can be used.)


Bokasa:Good news now they will know.Proceed Delilah,without moderation


Delilah:It is veryy shamefull(hesitates)


Antoinnette:Go a head tell mwalimu


Delilah :it is very sad my generation is lost.Our school oh our school

Bokasa :what?


Delilah:Just after entertainment in the line of my duty icame a cross the most astonishing drama.Everyone had left and gone to bed.I patrolled sectretely around the dormitories.And when I came to Kajuju House four beds were empty


Antoinnete:Meaning four pepole were missing?


Bokasa :And those four people are here?


Delilah :Yes


Delilah :After idiscovered that those four people were misssing I .

BOKASA:These four


Delilah :yes I personally walked to the dp’s office and luckily I had not gone far when—


Antoinnetete :—the watchman saw you


Delilah ;  —the watchman saw me


Bokasa :And he helped you get these criminals


Delilah L:We went round the school and we could have easily been fooled as we passsed the computer lab Lucky for us I heard the sound of soft music ans strange sounds.I tuiptoed to the backwindow and that is when everything came to light


BOKASA:Abracadabra tumewanasa!leo mtaimba!!!


Delilah ;These gals were watching and practicing


Bokasa :not only watching but also practicing


Antoinnete;neither set books nor national geographic


Bokasa :they were either watching their own geograhy or practising some unnatural biology


Antoinnetee :under the cover of darknesss


All ;its not true


Bokasa:who has asked for your opinion.You are here to be seen not to be heard


Bokasa: Deutronomy chapter—




Delilah:verse twenty two

The three:no man or woman is to have sexual relations with anoother—-


Bokasa :eehh abomonation!

The four:that verse is in leviticus


Bokasa :Leviticus or Deutronomy.You are immoral dirty and very perverted.Who has been surplying the pornographic material.(no answer)


Madam I propose that these culprits be expelled and their hair be shaved


Delilah : I support

Antoinnete: the discipplionery committee has to sit and decide


Bokasa :get me the scissors

(the scissors are availed and the process begins)

One by one

(He is about to start when enter Mapambo)


Mapambo:I m of the opinion that we are overstepping our boundarie of punishment according to the new bill of rights in the new constitution.Madam with due respect this is corporal and the real undressing of dignity.This children surely—


Bokasa ;mapambo have you lost your head


Mapambo;between me and you who has lost their head


Antoinnete;it seems to me you mr Mapambo cant you see you are right before students and what you are practicin gis unprofessional.(TO THE GIRLS)

And you get out of here what are staring at


Mapambo:I suggest that further investigations be made.After going throught the statements (holds out papers)written by the girls themselves I deem any further action inappropriate.That is the most logical thing.A part from that the ban on entertainment be lifted as I have suggested to the principal.


Bokasa ;this man is surely losing his grip on sanity.Who trains todays teachers or is the whole world going bananas


Antoinnete :There shall be no further investigations.The facts are clear the evidence is clear.Everthing is clear and on whose side are you anyway .I am beginning to doubt your impartiality in this matter mr entertainment master


Mapambo: This is not about taking sides ,be carefull not to cross the rubicon of decency madam academic mistresss and mr so many irrelevant titles .If you people have any sense left you better listen to me.We have been very irrational for some time but a time has come for us to employ our heads and not out strength.Sometimes I wonder why I am in this committee


Bokasa :I started wondering so long ago


Antoinnete :Their shall be no entertainment


Bokasa ;over my dead body


Mapambo;the principal has given me the go a head.FYI you are invited.


Bokasa:mr mapambo are you a student or a teacher


Antoinnete :I was going to ask


Mapambo:keep asking the questions.I m quite aware that you two are fond of turning a molehill into a mountain even brewing a storm out of a tea cup.But this time round this is not you usual cup of tea.Let reason prevail let justice prevail let the student be a student and not a prisoner.


Antoinnete;this is not a popularity contest neither is it a contest of who is smatter is a matter of the school traditions.the code of conduct.I m crestfallen,that amember of the disciplinary committee  should be speaking the way you do.


Mapambo:I m not dissapointed with myself


Bokasa; it is subboprtage madam.This young man has been smoking the opium of the new generation.Fame and populism.


Mapambo:madam my vote is no


Bokasa  ;in view of the fact that some members have decided before we sit my vote is yes-suspension

Antoinnete; suspension and as the chair of the DISCO I sugest that the majority are right and that is the opinion.The majority are always right.


Mapambo:You can have your cake but you will not eat it



Scene two

(Shanice,Venice,and Eunice COME IN AFTER Delilah.They are furiously swinging handkerchiefs at her delilah is however is another Saturday where the entertainment master Mr.Mapambo has orgainized for a talent and dance show)

Eunice: look at her she smiles like a crocodile

Venice :and laughs like a hyena

Eunice:And smells like a porcupine

Shanice: when did she last  brush her teeth because when she makes her speeches on assembly  the environmental police arrest our noses.

Eunice :and have you seen her walking style

All (demonstrate)Breakdance

Valence :Hypocrite


Shanice :she belches like a frog

(All the time delilah is indifferent.She has not moved she has not spoken but her body language exposes her.Finally she stamps her foot as if top say something then walks out.Enter more students accompanied by Mr.Mapambo.The following episode is an extravaganza of self entertinment, a TALENT AND DANCE as enacted.Mr.Mapambo is going to oversee .Various dances are to be performed. As the the show is heating up, as Mapambo is demonstrating a salsa step to Olympia enter Mr.Bokasa AND Antoinnete accompanied by the principal)

(salsa skirts be made for costume)


Madam principal you can see for your self.Seeing is believing

Antonnete: and all the time he has been saying this saying that.So is this the so called self entertainment?

Principal; mr Mapambo is this what is suppposed to happen

BOKASA:Yes.the principal has asked you a question is this professional?


Mapambo:No need to paraphrase mr.Bokasa.I have the question.

It is a demonstration madam it is  professional

Principal:This is—

Bokasa and Antoinnete:Unacceptaable

Principal :Girls you have no shame.Olympia so all the rumours that have been circulating are true.I am a fraid—

Mapambo:I m a fraid madam you have the wrong picture

BOKASA;Jesus of nazareth even when they have been caught with pants down they still deny

(Just then a blast is heard and three girls enter srceaming.A pparently a fire has broken out in the computer lab)


                                                      SCEEN THREE

(More screams follow and a number of students look scared, mixed up and confused  the screaming intensifies and smoke is seen from the Computer Lab. There is helter skelter running . Some grab water buckets trying to put off the fire. The situation is chaotic. The students are in panic.Antoinnete  and Bokasa look helplessly.But Mr Mapambo Has an idea.He has the key to the sttore with fire extinguishers.The principal beeing in almost a state of confusion also wonders what to do as so far the efforts to extinguish the fire have proved futile)

Olympia 😦 Agitated) our computers!(she dashes a bucket at the the flames)


Principal :what do we do ?

Mr Bokasa:the key

Principal :what key

Mr Mapambo and Olympia:The key to the emergency exit.There are fire extinguishers in—

Principal:who has it?

Deputy principal: Don’t you have eyes sir. This is al the girls can plot.To clear evidence of Pornographic literature  

Mapambo: Madam principal…

Principal: I have everything under control. They will be here any time from now

(The girls have  almost exhausted their strength)

Mapambo :I have the key

All  the girls:Mr Mapambo has the key(jubilation and excitement)

(Mapambo moves into action.The girls get the extinguishers and the fire is fought ferverntly.Delilah has fainted in the process GIRLS RASH TO HOLD HER trying some first aid)

(The school chaplain moves in)

Deputy principal: (Shouting )Make way for the school chaplain!

Right Reverend: I’m God’s messenger a doctor of the souls and doctor of the body. Medicine cannot do without religion. God help us be with us. This is he kneels besides Delilah and strokes her brow) .A young innocent girl

( the chaplain retrieves a bible from his coat)


Right reverend: God with us.

(He lifts the bible and returns it into the coat.He wears the stethoscope and carries out a quick medical check up on Delilah. After a short while he stands walks to the principal and every body watches as he walks her to Delilah)

(sound track music)


She is not dead!

She is alive

Mapambo: (standing up blackened with smoke)

Mapambo :The fire is out.

But one fire is nott

Principal: Mr Mapambo what are you talking about?

Mapambo: Mr. Makaburi owes us a confession about this fire.

Deputy principal: Impossible

Bokasa: Stories. As usual just stories…

Principal: Silence Mr. Makaburi. Mr Mapambo you have helped the girls and the school save millions of shillings.You are a true heroe.But I DON’T UNDERSTAND what you are talking a bout.

Bokasa and Antinnete:Madam principal—-

Principal :(Gesticulates a ahush)

(Three hands shoot up followed by several  students hands including Delilah)

Principal: Delilah you are too weak to speak.

Delilah :I have a confession!

Principal: And you?

Student 1,2 &3: We have a confession.

Principal: You

Olympia, Eunice, Shanice, Patience and Valence: We have a confession

Principal:And what are this confessions

All: Against Mr Bokasa and they are private and public matters.

(mime as the confessions are whispered to the Principal as soundtrack plays)

Principal:Mr Bokasa you have nothing to say let us meet in my office


(Principal gesticulates a hush)

PRINCIPAL:(to Antoinnete)Madam im heavily disappointed

And you girls thank you for being honest.

CHAPLAIN:say the truth and the truth shall set you free

(Music plays. Meanwhile Bokasa irritably sneezes as the girls celebrate downstage Mr Bokasa and Antoinnete and the principal dissappears behind curtains)

Curtains close






















Dear 2016,

I write you this letter my dear in the days of digital technology.Does anyone still read letters ?Your guess is as good as mine…


God has been fair and faithful that is a fact.Another fact is that you are here.Like all before you you have secrets of the future tucked within your body of days to come.Again the good thing is that only God knows them.

I’m writing to you concerned a citizen.What do you hold for our country’s leadership?It is my prayer that sanity reigns.The perpetrators of hate speech whose tongues wag in mudslinginging I pray that you bring the end of their popularity.For the tribal kings and queens let their political kingdoms fall like the walls of Jericho.Indeed what do you hold for this nation?

For the great citizens,the true men and women of God.Bless.For the rogues expose and prepare a hell on earth.Let you be of light in the darkness that is our nation.The young nation holds its dreams in anticipation.Bring the fulfilment of ambition in your days to come.What do you hold for this nation?

I remember the pillars of our children’s vision.The teachers.Let your days hold peace and reconciliation for them and the stakeholders.Let there be no strike.Let your days be of solutions.Be full of illumination for all the blind in leadership from top to bottom.Above all may your days be of prosperity for those who seek it honestly and diligently.Blight all the paths of corruption.And for the corrupt may your days provide special torture to haunt them in all spheres of their lives.

What do you hold for this nation?

For those who put this nation on the right path of light in the eyes of both GOD and man.I have but one prayer.That increase their wealth and health in your days.And for the arts,music and sports let your days be filled with global recognition.Victory is our claim.

Above all may your greatest secret be that you will reveal us as a God fearing nation in your days to come.

Yours faithfully